Back-to-school season is here, and college students are likely starting to think about what they’ll spend their money on for the rest of the year, including dorm room essentials, amenities like fitness programs and school supplies like backpacks. All that shopping may mean students have budgeting on their minds, especially as inflation continues to drive up consumer prices.
Taking advantage of student discounts is one of the best ways to make the most of your back-to-school budget. Numerous brands and retailers offer savings exclusive to college students, and gaining access to them is often as simple as showing your student ID in stores or verifying your school email address online. You can save even more by using a cash back app or credit card while shopping, some of which let you earn credits to use toward future purchases.
Below, we rounded up over 50 student discount programs you can take advantage of this year. We also consulted shopping experts about how and where to find these offerings while you shop.
Best student discounts of 2023
To recommend the best student discounts, we consulted sites like UNiDAYS, Student Beans, SheerID and ID.me, which aggregate student discount offerings from brands and retailers across shopping categories. Some also act as a third-party verification service to confirm your student status. We rounded up a handful of student discounts below from brands and retailers we’ve previously covered, in addition to a few others we think you should know about.
Keep in mind that this list is not exhaustive. Thousands of companies offer student discounts in stores and online, so check if the brand or retailer you're shopping from offers a student discount program before you make a purchase and how you can take advantage of it.
Best retailer-wide student discounts
- Amazon: Students can get a Prime account for $69 a year, roughly half off a standard membership ($139 a year). The membership comes with offers like Amazon Music Unlimited for $1, discounts on textbooks, a free monthly Grubhub+ Student membership with unlimited delivery and up to 10% off flights and hotels through StudentUniverse.
- Target: Students with a Target Circle membership can get 20% off one qualifying store purchase now through Aug. 26. Target Circle is a free loyalty program through which you get exclusive coupons year round.
- Walmart: Now through Sept. 7, students can get a Walmart+ membership for $6.47 per month or $49 per year, roughly half off a standard membership ($98 a year). The membership comes with free delivery on orders $35 or more, free shipping with no order minimum, an included Paramount Plus subscription, savings on fuel and more.
- Groupon: Groupon’s Select Student Program gets you up to $20 off every time you shop a local deal.
Best student discounts on dorm and school supplies
- Muji: 10% off your purchase
- Chegg: 25% off your first month of a Chegg Study Pack subscription
- Mattress Firm: Up to 20% off your purchase online or in stores
- Brooklyn Bedding: 30% off your purchase plus free shipping
- Corkcicle: 20% off your purchase
- Stanley: 20% off your purchase
- FedEx: Up to 30% off select shipping and packing services with a valid student ID
- The Happy Planner: 15% off your purchase
- Redbubble: 23% off your purchase
Best student discounts on streaming services and entertainment
- Peacock: Peacock Premium for $1.99 a month
- Hulu: Hulu with ads for $1.99 per month
- Spotify: Spotify Premium for $5.99 per month, which includes one month free and access to Hulu
- Apple Music: $5.99 per month, plus free access to Apple TV+ for a limited time
- AMC: Discounts offered by presenting a student ID at participating theaters
- YouTube: YouTube and YouTube Music for $7.99 per month, plus one month free
- Paramount Plus: Paramount Plus Essential Plan for $4.50 per month
- Pandora: Pandora Premium Student for $4.99 per month, plus 60 days free
- Tidal: College and high school students get at least 50% off Tidal’s HiFi or HiFi Plus subscriptions
- Headspace: Headspace Student Plan for $9.99 a year
- Soundcloud: Soundcloud Go+ for $4.99 per month
Best student discounts on groceries and meal delivery services
- Doordash: DashPass membership for $4.99 a month, which includes $0 delivery fees, 5% DoorDash credits on pickup orders and more
- Blue Apron: $110 off across five orders and free shipping on your first order through Student Beans
- HelloFresh: 55% off your first box with free shipping, plus 15% off one year of deliveries
- EveryPlate: 75% off your first box with free shipping, plus 15% off one year of deliveries
- Shipt: $4.99 a month for a Shipt Student Membership, which includes discounted same-day delivery from participating stores
- Home Chef: 50% off your first four meal boxes
Best student discounts on flights, hotels and travel
- StudentUniverse: Find discounted flights, hotels and other travel bookings through StudentUniverse
- Amtrak: 15% off purchases made one day in advance
- Getaway: 15% off your booking
- United Airlines: 18 to 23 year olds get 5% off flights if you book through United app and sign up for a free MileagePlus account
Best student discounts on clothes, shoes and accessories
- Girlfriend Collective: 20% off your purchase
- Madewell: 15% off your purchase online and in stores
- J. Crew: 20% off your purchase online and in stores now through August 20
- Nike: 10% off your purchase
- Reebok: 50% off your purchase
- Adidas: 30% off your purchase online and in stores
- New Balance: 15% off your purchase plus free shipping
- Outdoor Voices: 20% off your purchase
Best student discounts on tech and software
- Apple: College students can get a discount on select tech starting at $50 off, 20% off AppleCare+, credit with Apple Trade In and more
- Microsoft: 5 to 10% off select products from the Microsoft store
- Microsoft Office: Microsoft 365 Personal for $2.99 per month
- Adobe Creative Cloud: Adobe Creative Cloud All Apps plan for $19.99 per month
- HP: Up to 40% off tech once you join the HP Education Store Program
- Lenovo: Get access to exclusive savings on select products once you verify your student status during the checkout process
- Logitech: 25% off your purchase
- Evernote: 40% off Evernote Professional
- Samsung: Up to 30% off your purchase through the Education Offers Program using an eligible school email
Best student discounts on fitness memberships
- Alo Moves: One month free and then pay $5 per month or $50 per year
- Aaptiv: 50% off a monthly or yearly subscription
- Peloton App: $6.99 per month
- Pvolve: 20% off sitewide, including digital memberships and equipment
- The Sculpt Society: 30% off monthly memberships
Who is eligible for student discounts?
Student discounts are available to undergraduate and graduate students with proof of enrollment at a college or university, which is often in the form of a .edu email address. Sometimes, student discounts also extend to high school students if they have a school-issued ID or a .edu email address, but the majority of discounts are for college students.
How do student discounts work?
If a brand or retailer offers a student discount program, you’ll likely have to prove that you’re a student before gaining access to the promo code, says Kristin McGrath, a shopping expert at RetailMeNot, a deal-finding and cash back site.
In stores, you can usually just show a cashier your ID. But if you’re shopping online, some brands and retailers use third-party verification services like UNiDAYS, Student Beans, SheerID and ID.me to verify your student status. These services may require you to make a free account with them by inputting your .edu email address, college or university name and graduation year. Once you’re a verified student, the service saves your information and automatically applies the discount when you purchase from the student discount page on an affiliated retailer’s site.
How long do student discounts last?
Time frames on student discounts vary, so it’s important to read the fine print before using a promo code online or checking out in-person. Some student discounts are available year round, while others have expiration dates, McGrath says. A handful of brands and retailers, for example, only offer student discounts around the back-to-school season.
It’s also important to understand whether the student discount applies to your entire cart or a single item, McGrath says. Some merchants offer a deep, one-time discount on your entire cart, so shoppers can stock up on everything they need and apply the promo code to a pricier transaction, Porwal says. Other merchants, however, allow you to take advantage of their student discounts multiple times, whether it's on every purchase you make or one item every month or so.
If you’re shopping from a site that offers a student discount year round but you can only take advantage of it once, strategize before using the promo code, McGrath says. She recommends using bigger, non-student specific promo codes while they’re live and saving your student discount for a time when no better discount is available.
How to find student discounts
In addition to acting as third-party verification sites, UNiDAYS, Student Beans, SheerID and ID.me also aggregate student discounts offered by brands and retailers, making it easy for you to learn which companies offer savings opportunities. All of these websites allow you to search for specific brands and retailers, or you can browse discounts by category like office supplies or fashion. You can also see if savings are available in-person, online or both.
Beyond browsing the student discounts brands and retailers offer, be sure to check with your or your student’s school to see if it offers its own exclusive discounts, says Vipin Porwal, CEO and consumer savings expert at Smarty. “Often schools negotiate excellent deals with manufacturers that compete, or exceed, what retailers can provide,” he says.
Meet our experts
At Select, we work with experts who have specialized knowledge and authority based on relevant training and/or experience. We also take steps to ensure all expert advice and recommendations are made independently and without undisclosed financial conflicts of interest.
- Kristin McGrath is a shopping expert at RetailMeNot, a deal-finding and cash back site.
- Vipin Porwal is the CEO and a consumer savings expert at Smarty.